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Deceased Missourians on voting rolls still voting: 10,000 dead still registered to vote.
The Columbia Missourian ^ | November 2, 2006 | MATT WYNN & August Skamenca

Posted on 11/03/2006 8:59:35 AM PST by rface

Columbia native William Phillippe was drawn to the West Coast through military service and a steady job after he graduated from Hickman High School in 1938. He moved back to his hometown in 1988 and in 1992 married Rea Phillippe.

The two played in a folk-country band called Yours Truly a few times a month. William Phillippe strummed the guitar; his wife played keyboard.

“He was the best guitar picker and singer that ever was, I think,” Rea Phillippe said.

In August 2003, a blood clot caused William Phillippe to suddenly die.

But somehow, according to a state database created this year, William Phillippe managed to cast a vote in the 2004 presidential election.

“He couldn’t have,” Rea Phillippe said. “He couldn’t have voted.”

True enough. But the same mistake could happen again.

William Phillippe is one of 10,520 deceased citizens who remain registered to vote in Missouri, and one of 235 who — according to a state database created earlier this year — managed to cast a vote after death.

Dead people remain on the voter rolls of every county in Missouri. St. Louis County leads the state with 2,270 registered voters who are dead. Adair County has only one.

Some of those registered

to vote died long ago. One, ­William Bennett of Kansas City, died in March 1972.

In Phillippe’s case, his after-death “vote” was a clerical error.

When voters go to the polls, they sign on a line next to their name and a unique barcode. Election judges then use a laser to scan the bar codes of people who came to the polls, and the Missouri Secretary of State’s Office updates its voter database to reflect the vote of each citizen.

In 2004, Rea Phillippe saw her late husband’s name in the registry. She thought she was helping elections officials when she scribbled a note next to his name: “Deceased Aug. 3, 2003.”

In Cape Girardeau, where she lived until 1990, that note would have prompted an effort to verify her husband was dead, said Cape Girardeau County Clerk Rodney Miller.

“Absolutely, we would have looked into it,” he said.

Instead, Rea Phillippe’s note led a temporary worker in Boone County to scan Phillippe’s bar code, inaccurately creating a record that he had cast a ballot.

Temporary workers can’t be expected to do their jobs without making a few mistakes, Boone County Clerk Wendy Noren said. After all, sometimes voters sign on the wrong line, or in between lines, or make other marks that can cause errors.

“It’s like asking why anyone makes a typo,” Noren said. “That’s like saying we’re going to put out a paper without any errors. You can’t do it.”

Scanning mistakes by temporary workers were to blame in all six cases in 2004 in which dead people were listed as having cast a vote in Boone County, according to an analysis conducted by the Missourian.

Noren said she is able to verify the accuracy of any election in Boone County because she keeps paper copies of voter sign-in sheets “forever.”

State law, however, only requires county election officials to keep hard copies of sign-in sheets for 24 months. That means it might be impossible to trace the errors that led to 127 votes recorded by dead people before 2004.

The number of deceased who remain registered to vote worries Cole County Clerk Marvin Register, who fears people who want to commit voter fraud could exploit the situation.

“We can’t just let this go,” he said. “It’s something that has to be taken care of and we’re going to move to take care of this.”

At his request, the Missourian provided Register with its list of dead Cole County residents who remain registered. His office will remove their names as their deaths are verified.

“We will have them off there as soon as possible,” Register said. “They will not vote in this election.”

Boone County has 232 dead people on its list, but Noren said she’s working on removing them.

After a federal election, Noren sends a postcard to each registered voter to make sure they haven’t moved, died or otherwise become ineligible to vote. If the postcard is returned or the voter continues to participate in elections, the voter retains eligibility.

But even when there is evidence a person is deceased, federal law requires the name to stay on voter rolls through the next two federal elections.

Noren said she does not remove names from the statewide list until she is absolutely certain the person is incapable of voting. Obituaries, notices from relatives and other common ways to learn of a person’s death don’t necessarily result in removal from Boone County’s registration list. Once she can verify a person’s death through official methods, Noren said, their names are removed immediately.

In the 2000 elections, Noren said, Missouri had a problem with too many people being removed from the list, which made them unable to vote. She said the possibility of a few people casting votes in place of the dead is better than taking away the rights of legitimate voters because of “aggressive” removal policies.

“Making assumptions you shouldn’t make can cause hundreds of people not to be able to vote,” she said. “That’s government sponsored voter fraud to me.”

There is a system in place to remove dead voters regularly, said Stacie Temple, spokeswoman for Secretary of State Robin Carnahan. Every week, the Department of Health and Senior Services supplies a list of new deaths to every county clerk in the state. The clerks then purge any names from the list.

Temple said 127,000 dead people have been removed from the voter rolls since the statewide database was created early this year. She said the ultimate authority lies with county clerks.

“We work with them. We train them. We help them,” she said. “But at the end of the day, the responsibility for maintaining the voter lists falls on the local election authorities.”

That explanation is little comfort to Cole County resident Betty Schrimpf, whose late husband Robert Schrimpf remains registered 11 years after his death.

“This is their job to purge the databases,” she said. “Do it. What’s the problem? Why is he still on there?”

— KBIA/91.3 FM and KOMU TV reporter August Skamenca contributed to this report.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; News/Current Events; US: Missouri
KEYWORDS: deaddemsvoting; demovoteenhancement; elections; voteenhancement; voterfraud
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To: TravisBickle
I recall even overseas they were making jokes about the Carnahan election. We really should have laws that to be elected to a federal office, the candidate has to be alive.
21 posted on 11/03/2006 9:20:19 AM PST by Dante3
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To: rface

Tiger Rag
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger
Hold that tiger

Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?
Where's that tiger?


He's dead, Wendy. Let him go.


22 posted on 11/03/2006 9:23:27 AM PST by tumblindice ("I told you this would happen, you with your mini-skirts and Beatle boots." Reverend Lovejoy)
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To: rface

Missouri has evolved from the "Show Me" state to the
"Bury Me Deeper" state , it seems.


23 posted on 11/03/2006 9:28:47 AM PST by rod1
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To: Question Liberal Authority

My question is this...if the dead dudes can be legal to vote...can they be legal to count in a census?

If the answer is yes...then we in Alabama need to start counting tombstones and hustle up fourteen million additional dead dudes and get our fair share of representation in congress.

Being from the great state of Alabama...we are proud of our dead relatives heritage and their desire to remain true-blue American citizens even one hundred years after their death. We feel...they'd want to be counted...and we need to be as fair as we can about this whole thing.

I also think that we should allow dead politicans to continue in office, and that we should be able to elect formerly dead senators back into office. I'd like to bring Henry Clay back into office and have him represent a large chunk of our dead voters in Alabama. The only negative about this whole thing...is that this might end up like a Stephen King novel...like that cat cemetary thing...and then we'd need a bunch of Baptists to bail us out.


24 posted on 11/03/2006 9:31:45 AM PST by pepsionice
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To: Yo-Yo
Well, dead people might vote in Missouri, but in Minnesota they elect dead guys to the US Senate!

Same thing happened in Hawaii remember Patsy Mink?? Guess what party she was????
25 posted on 11/03/2006 9:35:48 AM PST by LynnHam
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To: rface

Proof that there is life after death. God is alive!


26 posted on 11/03/2006 9:35:53 AM PST by raftguide
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To: MortMan
I thought that a provisional ballot remedied the wrong removal of a registered voter from the rolls, while the fraudulent dead-voter was a problem without remedy. Gee, inconvenience versus fraud... I guess they decided to go with fraud.

and the dems in Maryland are screaming about Republicans having written guidelines for poll watchers.

27 posted on 11/03/2006 9:38:32 AM PST by Freee-dame
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To: concerned about politics

"DemoRat Vote Fraud" bump!


28 posted on 11/03/2006 9:49:31 AM PST by talleyman (Kerry & the Surrender-Donkey Treasoncrats - trashing the troops for 40 years.)
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To: rod1

Well, now we know why McCaskill is so big on nursing homes-potential voters..


29 posted on 11/03/2006 9:52:58 AM PST by cardinal4 (Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi..)
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To: neverdem; Howlin; rface

Bookmarked.

Thank you!

(MSM actual reporting and investigation alert!)


30 posted on 11/03/2006 9:55:22 AM PST by Robert A. Cook, PE (I can only donate monthly, but Hillary's ABBCNNBCBS continue to lie every day!)
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To: rface
Stem cells will REALLY help THEM!!
31 posted on 11/03/2006 9:59:30 AM PST by msnimje (You simply cannot be Christian and Pro-Abortion.)
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To: weegee

Death? Be kind, life without parole.


32 posted on 11/03/2006 10:12:28 AM PST by Temple Owl (Excelsior! Onward and upward.)
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To: rightinthemiddle
Great journalism from an otherwise liberal "newspaper". I use that word in quotes because it is the daily paper produced by the journalism students at Mizzou as part of their classwork. Indeed, this newspaper has hundreds of reporters, which sometimes makes for curious stories and coverage. But, this story is spot on.

Having said that, we will have to wait to see how well this, and other newspapers cover the election abuses that are sure to occur in St. Louis or KC on Tuesday.
33 posted on 11/03/2006 10:22:50 AM PST by theBuckwheat
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To: theBuckwheat

Its damned good enterprise journalism in my book.


34 posted on 11/03/2006 10:27:12 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: Temple Owl; All

I bet most of them are Democrats.


35 posted on 11/03/2006 10:28:14 AM PST by TexasPatriot8 (Issues matter. The Democrats can Foley & Macaca all they want to. They're still wrong on the issues!)
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To: msnimje

Missouri: The Snow Me State


36 posted on 11/03/2006 10:29:10 AM PST by Tall_Texan ("Journalislam" - reporting about murderous extremists as if they are moral equivalents.)
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To: rface
But even when there is evidence a person is deceased, federal law requires the name to stay on voter rolls through the next two federal elections. Why?
37 posted on 11/03/2006 10:31:27 AM PST by agrace (http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/agrace/)
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To: rightinthemiddle

And they are all in urban precincts and their have a higher turnout than the rest of the living populous?????? Gosh, not much more suspicious than the 2700 dead people who have already voted early in New York (4 to 1 Democrat).


38 posted on 11/03/2006 10:32:48 AM PST by bpjam (Not Voting in '06? Turn in your VRWC card at exit quietly)
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To: Temple Owl
I have no use for those who would seek to illegally steer the course of this nation.
39 posted on 11/03/2006 12:02:56 PM PST by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: rface

Just a little political humor. Sent to me by email. Enjoy...


While walking down the street one day a US senator is tragically hit by a
truck and dies.

His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

"Welcome to heaven," says St. Peter. "Before you settle in, it seems there
is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so
we're not sure what to do with you."

"No problem, just let me in," says the man

"Well, I'd like to, but I have orders from higher up. What we'll do is have
you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to
spend eternity."

"Really, I've made up my mind. I want to be in heaven," says the senator.

"I'm sorry, but we have our rules."

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down,
down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green
golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are
all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him.

Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake
his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at
the expense of the people.

They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and
champagne.

Also present is the devil, who really is a very friendly guy who has a good
time dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before
he realizes it, it is time to go.

Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises...

The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on heaven where St. Peter
is waiting for him.

"Now it's time to visit heaven."

So, 24 hours pass with the senator joining a group of contented souls moving
from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time
and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns.

"Well, then, you've spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose
your eternity."

The senator reflects for a minute, then he answers: "Well, I would never
have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would
be better off in hell."

So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to
hell.

Now the doors of the elevator open and he's in the middle of a barren land
covered with waste and garbage.

He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting
it in black bags as more trash falls from above.

The devil comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulder. "I don't
understand," stammers the senator. "Yesterday I was here and there was a
golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne,
and danced and had a great time. Now there's just a wasteland full of
garbage and my friends look miserable. What happened?"

The devil looks at him, smiles and says, "Yesterday we were
campaigning...... Today you voted."


40 posted on 11/03/2006 1:12:24 PM PST by wizr (Live life with a Passion!)
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